FATMAP difficulty grade
As you get further and further from downtown Tucson, the trail crowds continue to thin out.
This loop on the opposite side of the Tucson Mountains from downtown, anchored by the Ironwood Trail, sees some trail traffic, but not nearly as much as trails closer to town. This logical loop route runs through a complex trail system with a ton of splitting and crossing trails.
Be sure to follow the route mapped here and keep an eye out for signs that read "Ironwood Loop." But if you get off track, it's not really the end of the world—have some fun exploring! The singletrack is delightfully flowy and mellow, providing a fantastic introduction to singletrack riding for the neophyte mountain biker.
Unlike many beginner trails that are wide and more closely resemble a greenway path than a singletrack, the Ironwood Loop is deliciously narrow and sinuous.
The slender track snakes through sharp-tined cacti of all varieties, dipping into small washes, and twisting between scrubby trees. If you look up from the trail, you'll enjoy spectacular views of the Tucson Mountains to the east and the wide expanse of the desert further to the west.
These trails are located just outside of Saguaro National Park, and you can see that the park's name is well-earned: a seemingly endless sea of cacti spreads out in all directions. This little-ridden singletrack trail is a true gem for beginner riders in the Tucson area.